Monday, August 18, 2014

Ukraine rains treys on Andray Blatche-less Gilas Pilipinas (VIDEO)

The Philippine national men's basketball team ended its mini-tournament in Antibes, France on a sour note after suffering a 114-64 beatdown at the hands of Ukraine on Sunday (Monday morning PHL time).

Gilas Pilipinas was playing without naturalized center Andray Blatche, who was resting a minor injury suffered against France on Friday.

Without the lone NBA player in its lineup, the Philippines struggled mightily. Blatche's replacement in the starting five, Marcus Douthit, was rendered ineffective by the bigger Ukraine frontcourt. He finished with just five points on 1-of-7 shooting along with eight rebounds.

The rest of the team didn't do better, shooting just 33 percent while committing 22 turnovers.

Ukraine, meanwhile, was unconscious, hitting 58 percent of its shots, including 19-of-33 (58 percent) from beyond the arc.

Gilas was still in striking distance, trailing by just five points, 21-16, after the first period.

But Ukraine took advantage in the second quarter with Douthit sitting on the bench. The Eastern Europeans outscored the Philippines, 40-19, in the period to effectively decide the game at halftime.

The beatdown was so severe that Ukraine coach Mike Fratello benched his naturalized star point guard Pooh Jeter, a former Sacramento Kings bench player, on the bench for the whole second half.

The matchup is part of the two teams' buildup for the FIBA Basketball World Cup, which tips off on August 30. Gilas earlier lost tuneup matches to France and Australia in the pocket tournament.

Gilas will fly back to Spain to continue their training for the World Cup.


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